WE CAN HELP
Book a FREE consultation  
For a free consultation or assistance, please call 020 7730 6666

Hair Loss Blog

Browse by Category

Regular readers of Belgravia’s blog will know that the area of JAK inhibition has been consistently looking like the most feasible source for the first ever FDA approved treatments for even the most severe forms of Alopecia Areata.

Alopecia Areata has three main phenotypes – Alopecia Areata, which causes patchy hair loss to the scalp only and generally clears up within a year, Alopecia Totalis which leads to baldness of the head, including scalp and facial hair, and Alopecia Universalis – the most extensive iteration which presents as baldness from head to toe. These are autoimmune diseases which disrupt the hair growth cycle and cause the body to attack its hair follicles to varying degrees in a range of hair-bearing areas.

As we inch closer to the estimated release date of 2021/22, more players are jockeying for pole position in this race to address a currently unmet need.

To this end Incyte Corporation has recently updated the clinical trial registration documentation regarding its Phase 2 and Phase 3 trials for the oral JAK inhibitor, baricitinib. The baricitinib formulation is known by the code LY3009104.

medication-pills-capsules-health-illnessAddressing an unmet need

Over the past few years researchers, particularly those at Columbia University’s medical school in New York, and pharmaceutical companies from Aclaris Therapeutics to Pfizer, have been pulling out all the stops to develop safe, tolerable and effective hair loss solutions from established JAK inhibitor drugs.

Whilst Pfizer’s work in this area has received a Breakthrough Therapy designation from the FDA, both Aclaris Therapeutics and Concert Pharmaceuticals have been granted Fast Track status for their janus kinase (JAK) inhibitor-based formulations. The focus on bringing the most suitable treatments to market as soon as possible is due to the FDA wanting to establish a viable, safe and clinically-proven treatment for these conditions which currently have limited options yet can cause extreme distress to those affected.

Announced in August 2018, Incyte’s wide-ranging interventional, double blind trial started on 24th September 2018, and is taking place at a number of locations across the USA, Japan and Puerto Rico. It involves 725 participants taking one of three pills – high dose baricitinib, low dose baricitinib or a placebo. Their scalp hair growth, eyelash and eyebrow hair changes will be assessed at week 1 and week 36 of the trial.

Trialled on adult participants

All the volunteers are aged 18 to 70 years with confirmed Alopecia Totalis or Alopecia Universalis; those with the more mild to moderate scalp-only phenotype are excluded from the study.

Whilst there are no products currently approved by the FDA or MHRA licensed for the purpose of treating Alopecia Areata, there are clinically-proven medications which have been recognised by both for the treatment of genetic hair loss in both men and women. Hair loss specialists have found that when the topical solutions are consistently applied to the scalp where needed, as directed, they can have a significant effect on the scalp-only form.

Baricitinib is the active ingredient in the existing Incyte drug, Olumiant, designed for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis – another autoimmune disorder. The 2mg dose of this medication was FDA approved for this purpose only in April 2018 though a higher dose was rejected on the grounds of concerns regarding side effects. This factor has previously been raised in connection with other JAK inhibitors being redeveloped as potential autoimmune hair loss treatments, particularly tofacitinib. It is thought to be the reason other companies are also exploring topical JAK inhibitors, as this delivery method can often help to minimise adverse reactions.

As more information regarding the race to produce the first JAK inhibitor alopecia areata treatment becomes available, we will publish it on the Alopecia section of Belgravia’s hair loss blog, and are cautiously optimistic that everything seems on track with regards the initial estimated release date.

In the meantime, adults concerned about sudden hair fall and bald patches appearing can take advice from a hair loss specialist where their scalp is the only area affected; children under 16 with any form of alopecia and adults with the more extensive phenotypes should consult their GP or dermatologist first, for advice and information.


Circ - Belgravia Centre Hair Loss Clinics LondonThe Belgravia Centre

The Belgravia Centre is an organisation specialising in hair growth and hair loss prevention with two clinics and in-house pharmacies in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world’s largest gallery of hair growth comparison photos and demonstrates the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time to arrange a free consultation.


Related Stories


HairlossANSWERS - Click to Submit Your Query to Our Hair Loss Experts

Name: Addison

diagram areas of scalp affected by stress related hair loss in men and womenQuestion: What can I use to grow my hair back? I’ve had hair loss from stress.

Answer: Hi, Addison. There are many conditions which can be caused or influenced by stress. Therefore, we would need more detail as to your diagnosis in order to provide you with appropriate hair loss treatment recommendations.

In order to give you a better idea as to what may be involved, here is a brief overview as to some of the key types of hair loss caused by stress and how they are commonly treated.

It is also important to note that where stress is the cause or a factor, the reason behind this should also be addressed.

Temporary hair loss

There are two temporary hair loss conditions which can be sparked by stress – either emotional or physical – which tend to become noticeable around three months after being triggered. These are Telogen Effluvium when the condition lasts up to six months, or Chronic Telogen Effluvium, also known as Diffuse Thinning, when it lasts for a minimum of six months. They both cause thinning hair from all over the scalp, with a noticeable drop in the hair’s volume as a result of up to 30 per cent of the hairs which would otherwise have been in the active phase of the hair growth cycle prematurely entering the resting phase and falling out.

Whilst these tend to be more commonly seen in women, when they are stress-related they can affect both men and women. Whilst they will generally right themselves naturally in due course, treatment and appropriate supporting products, from low level laser therapy devices to targeted food supplements, may also be beneficial.

A significant factor to consider when people present with either of these temporary conditions is their impact upon those with a genetic predisposition to permanent, hereditary hair loss…

Normal Hair Growth Cycle and disrupted Alopecia Areata telogen effluvium diagram

Permanent hair loss

Men and women who have androgenetic alopecia, most commonly referred to as Male Pattern Baldness and Female Pattern Hair Loss, can find that stress exacerbates their condition. Where the condition is already present and is simply made worse by stress they may find their hair starts to feel drier, look more lifeless and their rate of hair fall speeds up. Whilst these forms of genetic hair loss only affect the areas along the top of the head from crown to hairline and temporal regions, they may also notice thinning hair all over their scalp. This is the result of one of the temporary conditions listed above which can occur simultaneously alongside pattern hair loss.

In people with an underlying genetic predisposition to Male or Female Pattern Baldness, the onset of these conditions can be sped up by a bout of Telogen Effluvium/Chronic Telogen Effluvium. However, because these conditions affect the entire scalp diffusely, it can be difficult to tell if this is the case without having a professional consultation with a hair loss specialist.

There are clinically-proven, MHRA licensed and FDA approved genetic hair loss treatments – one topical (suitable for men and women), one oral (men only) – and – a tailored approach can help to treat both conditions at once, where needed. This can involve not only the established medications in the most suitable formulations, but also additional products and treatments designed to support hair growth.

Autoimmune alopecia

Extreme stress, sudden shock or trauma are known to prompt sudden hair loss from the autoimmune disorder Alopecia Areata. This disrupts the hair growth cycle and results in normal hair production being shut down in certain hair-bearing areas depending on the severity of the condition. In its mildest form – Alopecia Areata – it causes rounded bald spots to the scalp only, but in more extreme phenotypes it can cause baldness of the scalp or from head to toe.

The scalp-only form may clear up naturally, and often does within 12 months in the majority of cases, though whether or not this will happen – or when – cannot be predicted.

Alopecia Areata treatment is often possible for the scalp only version and can help to encourage hair regrowth, however, there are less options available for those where the hairloss is more extensive and those that are possible tend to be less effective.

As before, given we would need more information in order to tailor our recommendations for suitable hair loss solutions to your condition, medical profile, age and personal preferences, we advise having a consultation with a specialist as the next step in your hair growth journey.


circ - Mens and womens hair vitamins Hair Vitalics for Men Women Belgravia Centre hair growth supplementThe Belgravia Centre

The Belgravia Centre is an organisation specialising in hair growth and hair loss prevention with two clinics and in-house pharmacies in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world’s largest gallery of hair growth comparison photos and demonstrates the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time to arrange a free consultation.


Related Stories


Controversial Irish radio DJ Niall Boylan has been praised for opening up about his hair loss history, though the reason he chose to speak out has been called out for being altogether less laudable.

Whilst presenting an awards show in 2016, a number of the chat show host’s peers started teasing him about his hair then one reached out and tugged it.

Boylan appeared on RTE show Cutting Edge and discussed his embarrassment and why he is so self-conscious about his hair – which he admitted is a hair replacement system.

Developed Alopecia Areata at an early age

DJ radio broadcasting microphoneThe 55 year old revealed the root of his self-consciousness over his hair goes back to his childhood, having developed Alopecia Areata after being bullied in primary school.

This autoimmune disorder, which can cause anything from patchy hair loss in the form of rounded bald spots on the scalp to complete baldness from head to toe, is often thought to be triggered by extreme stress, shock or trauma. Whilst in the mildest, scalp-only form the hair may often grow back, it can also fall out again. This is what Boylan says happened to him, with his hair regrowing in his teens then his Alopecia Areata recurring shortly after, which he believes was a result of exam stress.

At 30 years of age he decided to take proactive steps towards dealing with the appearance of his hairloss, opting for a hair replacement system. Although he investigated surgical hair restoration, as he was bald and had no follicles to be used as donor hair, he was unsuitable for a hair transplant.

Instead, the replacement system is effectively an advanced form of wig which is surgically-bonded to his scalp and does not come off. Despite its realistic appearance, the DJ says he is still not happy with his current hair loss solution as he constantly worries about it, citing his appearance as the reason he chose to work in radio rather than TV.

Whilst many social media users were quick to offer empathy and commend his candidness, due to Boylan’s out-spoken and frequently contentious views, particularly regarding his often outdated take on social issues such as homelessness, women’s rights and immigration, others felt their sympathy wasn’t warranted stating him to be a ‘bully boy’ himself. One of the kinder viewers tweeted, “ok this is sad & upsetting … he has a lot of baggage … I do feel sorry for him but do wish not so aggressive on other issues.”

Hair loss solution imminent?

Given Boylan’s mention that he could not have a hair transplant due to not having the necessary hair to graft and then fill out the affected areas, it is likely that he has one of the more severe forms of Alopecia Areata: Alopecia Totalis or Alopecia Universalis. These cause hair loss from the entire head, including facial hair, eyebrows and eyelashes, or from head to toe, respectively.

Whilst Alopecia Areata treatment can often be successful for the scalp-only form, these other phenotypes are currently far harder to address. However, by 2021 it is likely that new treatments – either topical, oral or both – may be made available to regrow hair lost to even these most extreme forms of autoimmune alopecia. Three separate pharmaceutical companies currently have drugs in accelerated development for this purpose which have been granted ‘fast track’ status by the US medical regulatory board, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and are all based around a methodology known as JAK inhibition.

This significant breakthrough would mark the first such clinically-proven treatments being made available, offering another non-surgical hair loss solution to people who have not previously had realistic choices outside Boylan’s route of wearing a wig or hair system.


Circ The Belgravia Centre Hair Loss Treatment for Alopecia AreataThe Belgravia Centre

The Belgravia Centre is an organisation specialising in hair growth and hair loss prevention with two clinics and in-house pharmacies in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world’s largest gallery of hair growth comparison photos and demonstrates the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time to arrange a free consultation.


Related Stories


One of the hair loss world’s most hotly anticipated clinical trial results report concerns Concert Pharmaceuticals’ CTP-543 drug.

This novel solution is being tested as a potential treatment for even the most severe forms of the autoimmune disorder Alopecia Areata which can cause anything from bald spots and rounded patches anywhere on the scalp, to complete baldness from head to toe.

Currently in the Phase 2a stage of the clinical trial process, the pharmaceutical company has announced it is amending its initial remit, expanding it to include an additional set of tests.

Pills medication tabletsNow also evaluating higher doses of CTP-543

It was announced in August 2018 that 4mg and 8mg doses of CTP-543 would be trialled during the 12-week Phase 2a research, however, in late September 2018 an additional cohort of 12mg was introduced.

According to a press release issued by Concert Pharmaceuticals, “In the third quarter of 2018, an independent Data Monitoring Committee (DMC) conducted a planned interim safety data review after patients in the trial had been dosed with an 8 mg dose of CTP-543 or placebo twice daily for at least 12 weeks. Based on this review, the DMC provided its recommendation to continue with the current 8 mg cohort to completion and also provided support for an additional cohort to evaluate the 12 mg dose twice daily. The Company has initiated enrollment in the 12 mg cohort. The Company also expects to report topline data from the 4 mg and 8 mg cohorts of the Phase 2a trial in the fourth quarter of 2018.”

CTP-543 is an oral JAK inhibitor drug which was developed from ruxolitinib – a prescription medication currently available for the treatment of moderate to high risk myelofibrosis under the brand name of Jakafi.

It is one of three Alopecia Areata treatment drugs currently in development that have been awarded expedience by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the USA. Concert was awarded FDA Fast Track status in January 2018 for CTP-543.

Current Alopecia Areata treatment options

Mild to moderate Alopecia Areata of the scalp only can be notably different to the more extensive forms, Alopecia Totalis and Alopecia Universalis, which cause total hairloss of the head, and head and body, respectively.

Alopecia Areata which appears as patchy hair loss on the scalp will often see spontaneous recovery with hair regrowth resuming naturally within 12 months in many cases. This is not often so for the more extreme phenotypes.

Alopecia Areata treatment for the scalp only form can involve topical medications to help accelerate hair growth and can often be carried out at home. In contrast, Alopecia Totalis and Alopecia Universalis treatment options tend to be hospital-based and currently mostly revolve around steroid injections or topical immunotherapy sessions, and the success rates tend to be on the low side.

It is for this reason that the FDA is encouraging promising treatments particularly those aimed at these more pervasive by helping to expedite their development by prioritising their reviews by the medical regulatory body. It is currently hoped that the first FDA approved treatments may be available by 2021.


The Belgravia Centre

The Belgravia Centre is an organisation specialising in hair growth and hair loss prevention with two clinics and in-house pharmacies in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world’s largest gallery of hair growth comparison photos and demonstrates the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time to arrange a free consultation.


Related Stories


A patient with complete hair loss of the scalp, caused by an autoimmune disorder known as Alopecia Totalis, has managed to regrow significant amounts of her hair due to a side effect of eczema medication.

The 13 year old, who was completely bald and had not grown any hair on her scalp since she was 2 years old, was having dupilumab injections to treat her atopic dermatitis.

dupilumabWhat is dupilumab?

Dupilumab is currently FDA approved in the USA and, whilst not MHRA licensed for the UK specifically, it has been approved by the European Medicines Agency (EMA) for use throughout the European Union, for the treatment of moderate to severe atopic dermatitis (eczema) only. It is prescribed under the Regeneron brand name Dupixent and is administered via injection, delivered in pre-filled, single dose syringe form.

In the UK it can be utilised by the NHS, however, if patients see no response after 16 weeks of treatment, it must be stopped, as per guidance issued by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence in June 2018.

Concerns have been raised regarding its pricing but, most importantly, its side effect profile, with a number of potential associated adverse reactions ranging from reactions at the sites of the injections, conjunctivitis, and dry eye to oral herpes and other herpes simplex virus infections.

According to a September 2017 press release issued by Dupixent’s UK marketing team Sanofi, the drug inhibits ‘overactive signaling of two key proteins, IL-4 and IL-13, which are believed to be major drivers of the persistent underlying inflammation in atopic dermatitis’.

Treating Alopecia Areata with dupilumab

Dupilumab appears to keep functioning of IL-4 and IL-13 in check; these are both interleukins – types of proteins involved in regulating the immune system. The key link here is that Alopecia Areata, Totalis and Universalis are all considered to be autoimmune diseases whereby their sudden onset patchy hair loss to total baldness is caused by a disruption to the hair growth cycle triggering the body to attack the follicles.

Diagram Belgravia Centre Different Types of Alopecia Areata autoimmune hair loss

Areas affected by hair loss shown in blue

At least one of this pair of interleukins (IL-13) has previously been thought to play a role in Alopecia Areata, particularly its more severe forms, Alopecia Totalis (baldness of the scalp with facial hair loss, such as eyebrows and eyelashes, also possible) and Alopecia Universalis (complete hairlessness from head to toe). Doctors have considered that by inhibiting IL-13 – and potentially other interleukins – hair regrowth may occur in people with these types of hair loss.

This medication was previously identified in 2016 as being potentially beneficial to people with various forms of Alopecia Areata. Studies and clinical trials using dupilumab to treat autoimmune-related hairloss have been going on ever since, with a 2023 completion date currently estimated.

An observational article detailing the aforementioned teenager’s ‘success story’ was published in the JAMA Dermatology medical journal on 10th October 2018. It was authored by Dr Maryanne Makredes Senna of the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, USA, and refers to the finding as ‘the first known case of hair growth in a patient with alopecia totalis associated with the use of dupilumab’.

The teen started this treatment in July 2017 and has now seen moderate to extensive – though not full – hair regrowth. As a result, further trials into using this form of subcutaneous treatment for severe alopecia – which currently has limited options with low success rates, unlike scalp-only Alopecia Areata Treatment – are expected.


The Belgravia Centre Hair Loss Clinic - Hair Loss Specialist ConsultationThe Belgravia Centre

The Belgravia Centre is an organisation specialising in hair growth and hair loss prevention with two clinics and in-house pharmacies in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world’s largest gallery of hair growth comparison photos and demonstrates the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time to arrange a free consultation.


Related Stories


HairlossANSWERS - Click to Submit Your Query to Our Hair Loss Experts

Name: Leah

Question: What about LDN for immune system disorders and diseases? My son has Alopecia Universalis. he is 19. Has anyone tried LDN? (and had success?) Has anyone tested for correlation between metal levels in the body and Alopecia? I am particularly curious about a study that mentioned various immune system disorders appearing in people that had had joint replacement surgeries, where metal joints were put in. My mother is a perfect example, developed Sjogrens Syndrome a few years after getting two knees replaced. My son has had a chest operation and has had two metal bars in his chest now for 2 years. He developed Alopecia Universalis rapidly over the past 6 months.

Pills medication tabletsAnswer: Hi, Leah. There are currently no MHRA licensed nor FDA approved treatments for Alopecia Universalis, however, many are currently in development. Indeed, a number look promising and have been granted ‘fast track’ or ‘breakthrough’ status by the FDA, indicating they will work with companies towards accelerating the development and approvals process. It is currently estimated that the first medications for this autoimmune disorder – which are believed to be both topical and oral – should be ready to release by 2022, if all remaining clinical trials to prove their safety, efficacy and tolerability, go to plan.

With regards to LDN – low-dose naltrexone, which is generally used for treating opiate addiction  – this is not something we offer at Belgravia and not something we are particularly familiar with. However, in a January 2018 article by Natasha Atanaskova Mesinkovska of the Department of Dermatology at the University of California, USA, entitled ‘Emerging Unconventional Therapies for Alopecia Areata’ published in the Journal of Investigative Dermatology Symposium Proceedings, a compelling argument is made for treatment with low-dose naltrexone.

That said, many more clinical trials are needed to properly establish a fuller picture of potential benefits and any negatives for autoimmune alopecia, including long-term side effects, safety and tolerability.

If you would like to explore LDN treatment for hair loss further, your son may be able to access this type of treatment via a dermatologist or his GP, particularly if you are based in the USA. As it is a fairly novel approach, patients will need to be monitored closely throughout.

With regards your query concerning metal joints and their links to autoimmune disease, it is not a common concern, however it is possible to be allergic to the metal used in joint replacements. This could then trigger various reactions within the body as it seeks to protect its critical functions. If the reaction came as a shock to the body or caused a ‘traumatic’ reaction, this could certainly trigger Alopecia Areata in any of its forms, however, we are unsure of any other autoimmune disorders may be set off in the same way.

Autoimmune issues are still an enigmatic area of biology and, whilst our understanding of them is slowly increasing, there is a lot that – for now, at least – remains unaccounted for by science.


The Belgravia Centre

The Belgravia Centre is an organisation specialising in hair growth and hair loss prevention with two clinics and in-house pharmacies in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world’s largest gallery of hair growth comparison photos and demonstrates the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time to arrange a free consultation.


Related Stories


When a 14 year old developed patchy hair loss from the autoimmune disorder Alopecia Areata his confidence was shattered.

The initial small bald spots gradually progressed to larger patches of hair loss, eventually covering most of his scalp, causing the Peterborough teen to lose his self-esteem as well as his hair.

However, now at 16 years of age, Jake Reed has found a clever way to cope with his baldness; he has undergone a six hour micropigmentation session to have ‘hair’ tattooed back on.

Improved quality of life

It was Reed’s mum who came up with the idea of him having the medical tattooing procedure after researching ways to help her son.

He became reclusive and self-conscious as a result of the worsening autoimmune condition, whereby the body attacks hair follicles, particularly after being teased at school. Although the microscopic hair fibres – a cosmetic product used to disguise thinning hair (rumoured to be used by Wayne Rooney and David Beckham to hide their hair loss during public appearances) – he used twice per day to fill in bald patches proved a decent short-term solution, his mum was keen to find a more permanent way to turn her son’s confidence around.

After looking into micropigmentation, which is also known as trichopigmentation and is a type of medical tattooing whereby fine needles and various different shades of ink are dotted onto the scalp to recreate the appearance of very short hair in a buzzcut style, she found that it was only available to over 18s in the UK. So mother and son headed to New York where the procedure – described by Jake as feeling “like a mosquito bite over and over again” – was carried out.

Fresh from his inking session, Jake Reed said, “I was really nervous but pushed through it… it turned out great.”

Now that he has turned 16, Alopecia Areata treatment is also an option, but – should his hair loss be too extensive – the tattoo, which is likely to require occasional top ups as the dye fades, will remain, ensuring he always has the appearance of hair.

Micropigmentation to hide hair loss

In addition to the scalp, micropigmentation can also be used to fill in patchy eyebrows or recreate those lost to the more severe iterations of Alopecia Areata – Alopecia Totalis and Alopecia Universalis. In these cases it is known as microblading and short, sweeping strokes are used to mimic fine eyebrow hairs rather than the stubble-style dots used on the scalp.

Micropigmentation can be of huge benefit to those who do not have the option of hair loss treatment, but it is incredibly important that the procedure is carried out by a specialised professional. Micropigmentation is not the same as regular tattooing – the needles are finer and the inks are also different – so this is not something to visit a regular tattoo parlour for.

This is something various people, including former video blogger Yousef ‘Kats’ Erakat, have found out after needing laser tattoo removal to rectify cartoon-like, unnatural-looking hairlines. These generally seem to have arisen from inexperienced tattooists drawing hairlines on far too low on the forehead, or by using thick straight marks to create an outline that they then coloured in a flat, matte black, as opposed to mimicking individual hairs in the myriad shades that make up our natural hair colour.

Anyone considering this procedure should do their research before choosing a practitioner and reading the NHS guide to permanent makeup – another term which includes micropigmentation for hair loss – is advised.


The Belgravia Centre

The Belgravia Centre is an organisation specialising in hair growth and hair loss prevention with two clinics and in-house pharmacies in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world’s largest gallery of hair growth comparison photos and demonstrates the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time to arrange a free consultation.


Related Stories


Three people affected by phenotypes of the autoimmune disorder Alopecia Areata have opened up about their experience in a new short film for leading hair loss charity, Alopecia UK.

Its title – Shedding – is intended as a double entendre as it applies to both shedding their hair and ‘shedding their facade’ in order to reveal their true selves and feelings to the audience.

Alopecia UK hair loss charityBy talking candidly about losing their hair and how they dealt with it, including its affect on their self-esteem and how they regained their confidence, it is hoped this documentary will help others struggling with hair loss.

Personal stories of dealing with Alopecia Areata

The three alopecians featured in the short documentary are Angie, Naomi and Tom, each of whom discusses the way their ‘life changing’ diagnoses affected their mental health, as well as their experiences of trying to find suitable treatments.

Although the scalp-only form of the condition may benefit from Alopecia Areata treatment, this is less often the case with the more severe forms Alopecia Totalis and Alopecia Universalis which cause baldness of the head and from head-to-toe respectively.

Tom is no stranger to appearing on camera. He is a popular video blogger and Alopecia UK ambassador, whose Tomohawk YouTube channel, dedicated to Minecraft, video games such as Fortnite, and fun DIYs, has over 160,000 subscribers. He also has a dedicated hairloss channel, called Tomohawk Talks Alopecia. In November 2018 he will be running the Clowne half marathon and is currently accepting sponsorship via his JustGiving page to raise money for Alopecia UK.

We hope you enjoy this incredibly honest, drp-produced short, which – when it debuted on the Alopecia UK Facebook page – received a wave of positive feedback from both those affected by various forms of autoimmune alopecia and those trying to support friends or family with the disorders. Director Dominic Allen commented, “So pleased to see all the positive feedback on here. As a filmmaker it was a genuinely very rewarding experience to be a part of, and I hope ‘Shedding’ makes the positive impact it was intended to, as well as promote the great work that Alopecia UK do in supporting people.”

Click the image below to watch the full documentary on the Alopecia UK website.


Circ The Belgravia Centre Hair Loss Treatment for Alopecia AreataThe Belgravia Centre

The Belgravia Centre is an organisation specialising in hair growth and hair loss prevention with two clinics and in-house pharmacies in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world’s largest gallery of hair growth comparison photos and demonstrates the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time to arrange a free consultation.


Related Stories


The old adage about public transport – you wait ages for a bus then three turn up at once – appears to also hold true with regards autoimmune disorders. Whilst no-one ‘waits’ to get one, once one autoimmune disease is diagnosed it is likely that more may also present.

This is why people with any form of Alopecia Areata (AA) – the autoimmune disorder which causes varying degrees of sudden hair loss – are often prone to additional health issues.

Hypothyroidism and hair lossA number of thyroid conditions, including Graves’ disease and Hashimoto thyroiditis, are known to be autoimmune in nature so it is clear why medical professionals wanted to explore associations between the two types of conditions.

Interestingly, researchers from dermatology departments at The Catholic University of Korea in Suwon, have found that – in addition to there being clear links, people with certain types of autoimmune alopecia may be more likely to develop thyroid conditions.

Nationwide Korean study

The results of a nationwide Korean ‘population-based, cross-sectional study’ was published on 17th September 2018 in the Journal of Dermatology via the Japanese Dermatological Association.

Information on the patients studied was taken from the Korea National Health Insurance claims database. It involved those professionally diagnosed with Alopecia Areata (that causes patchy hairloss of the scalp only), Alopecia Totalis (where the head becomes bald and there is often facial hair loss, such as eyebrows and eyelashes falling out) and Alopecia Universalis (total baldness from head to toe). These were split into two sub-groups: a mild to moderate AA group comprising Alopecia Areata patients only, and a severe AA group consisting of those with Alopecia Totalis or Alopecia Universalis.

A control group without Alopecia Areata was also established whereby patients were matched to the Alopecia Areata groups participants by age and gender.

Researchers outlined their findings in the published paper, noting ‘significant associations’ between Alopecia Areata and overt thyroid diseases. The team discovered that patients with a confirmed diagnoses of any kind of Alopecia Areata were more likely to develop Graves’ disease or Hashimoto thyroiditis than those without. Furthermore, those in the severe AA group – those with Alopecia Totalis or Alopecia Universalis – were found to have a stronger increased risk of developing either of these thyroid conditions.

Those with scalp-only Alopecia Areata were found to have an risk of odds ratio [OR], 1.415; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.317–1.520 for Graves’ disease and OR, 1.157; 95% CI, 1.081–1.237 for Hashimoto thyroiditis.

Those with Alopecia Totalis or Alopecia Universalis registered even more prone, with statistics provided as OR, 1.714; 95% CI, 1.387–2.118 for Graves’ disease and 1.398; 95% CI, 1.137–1.719 for Hashimoto thyroiditis.

What are autoimmune disorders?

The immune system protects our bodies from infection and disease. If there are issues with the normal functioning of this system – either over-activity or under-activity – then health issues can arise.

Where there is under-activity or low activity, this immune deficiency may reduce the body’s ability to fight infections, leaving those affected more vulnerable to illness.

Where there is over-activity, autoimmune diseases may occur but the specific reason as to why remains a mystery. This involves the body attacking its tissues and cells; in the case of Alopecia Areata it is the hair follicles which are targeted in various hair bearing areas of the head and body, depending on the phenotype.

Mild to moderate Alopecia Areata, the form which causes rounded bald patches to the scalp only, currently has the most effective treatment options available. Whilst Alopecia Totalis and Universalis treatments are generally considered to have low success rates, there are a number of novel therapies currently in development, with the backing of the USA’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and it is currently hoped that effective remedies for these more severe iterations may be available by 2022.


Circ The Belgravia Centre Hair Loss Treatment for Alopecia AreataThe Belgravia Centre

The Belgravia Centre is an organisation specialising in hair growth and hair loss prevention with two clinics and in-house pharmacies in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world’s largest gallery of hair growth comparison photos and demonstrates the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time to arrange a free consultation.


Related Stories


Music can touch the soul, bringing comfort, strength and solace to many, so it is perhaps unsurprising to hear how people are using it to inspire those with hair loss caused by the autoimmune disorder Alopecia Areata.

Recently leading hair loss charity Alopecia UK took inspiration for its September 2018 Alopecia Awareness Month campaign from ‘This Is Me’ – a track from the musical The Greatest Showman.

Filipino singer Abby AsistioNow, Filipina singer-songwriter Abby Asistio, whose hair loss is the result Alopecia Areata, is hoping to empower her peers with her new song, ‘More Than My Hair’.

We are “more than our hair”

Asistio is a long-term Alopecia Areata Awareness advocate and this is her second track dedicated to talking specifically about hair loss.

More Than My Hair features the support group Alopecia Philippines and a ‘behind the scenes’ teaser for the video was shared on Facebook ahead of its release today (30th September 2018).

Abby Asistio, who generally wears a wig or turban but has also shared images of herself without her head covered, posted the following message about the project to her Instagram page:

“I could not begin to describe how disheartening losing one’s hair, eyelashes and eyebrows are. For most people, Alopecia causes a huge hurdle or halt in their lives as they begin questioning their worth, identity, capabilities and acceptance in society. We want to show people that we are “more than our hair” — and that real strength, courage and beauty springs from the inside out. It’s possible to be brave and rise #AboveAlopecia. You are not alone and there are people out there who are willing to help and support you through your journey.” Continues below…


About Alopecia Areata

There are three main phenotypes that all come under the umbrella term of ‘Alopecia Areata’ and all can affect men, women and children of all races and hair types. They are the result of the body attacking the hair follicles and the precise reason it occurs remains unknown.

The first phenotype, also known as Alopecia Areata, is considered to be the most mild to moderate and causes patchy hairloss to the scalp only. Alopecia Areata Treatment can be effective but is generally only suitable for over 16s.

The two more severe forms are Alopecia Totalis and Alopecia Universalis which present as baldness of the head – including loss of facial hair, eyebrows and eyelashes – and the body rejecting all hair from head to toe, respectively. Whilst some therapies are offered for these conditions, however, the success rate is not particularly significant. Treatments that can regrow hair in these instances are currently being developed, with an estimated release date of around 2022.

In all three phenotypes, the hair loss is sudden – often triggered by a sudden shock, trauma or through certain allergies – and whether or not hair regrowth will resume, and if so when, cannot be predicted. In cases of the scalp-only form, it is common to see hair grow back within 12 months, though this is not always the case and is far less likely in the more extreme iterations.

For people affected by these highly visible conditions, the support of Alopecia Awareness advocates and hair loss charities can be hugely beneficial. We wish Abby Asistio the very best with her latest single and spreading its fantastic message.


The Belgravia Centre

The Belgravia Centre is an organisation specialising in hair growth and hair loss prevention with two clinics and in-house pharmacies in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world’s largest gallery of hair growth comparison photos and demonstrates the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time to arrange a free consultation.


Related Stories